Fall 2017 English Courses


  • University Writing – First Year

    English 100 – University Writing Strategies (multiple sections)

    We offer many sections of our foundational writing course, University Writing Strategies. English 100 teaches students the fundamentals of first year university writing, as well as valuable transferable skills. You'll hone your ability to read critically, respond thoughtfully in discussions, and compose well-structured and well-reasoned arguments. And you'll be introduced to the basics of citing sources and researching responsibly.

    The course examines aspects of contemporary culture through a variety of print and other media. Course themes and cultural content are chosen by individual instructors, who ensure the course material is both engaging and relevant. Assignments such as the critical response, the narrative argument, and the documented research essay prepare students for the demands of thoughtful reading and writing at university.

    Creative Writing – First Year

    English 190-01 – Creative Writing I: Crystal Hurdle

    When is a poem really a story? When should you leave a draft alone? Through in-class writing, weekly homework assignments, and personal projects, you will write up a storm in a number of genres. You'll be introduced to professional writers, from Sharon Olds to Vladimir Nabokov, from William Carlos Williams to Sylvia Plath, to visiting writers, as well as to the work of your colleagues, in aid of developing your style, articulating your voice. Texts include Gary Geddes, ed. 20th-Century Poetry & Poeticsand Gary Geddes, ed. The Art of Short Fiction.


    English 190-02 – Creative Writing I: Anne Stone

    In this open and supportive environment, we will look to contemporary works in a variety of genres, examining their possibilities with a writer's eye. Each week, you'll respond to writing prompts that encourage you to stretch out as a writer. You'll workshop your writing, participate in a lively workshop culture, and – over the course of the semester – you'll create a new body of work.


    English 191-01 – Creative Writing II: Roger Farr

    With a focus on writing in response to visual art, literature, and walking, this section of English 191 carries on with techniques introduced in ENGL 190, but does not assume or require that students have taken creative writing before. It is an intensive course designed to help students develop their writing, and their thinking about writing, through creative experimentation with language. We will work with short prose fiction, poetry/poetics, and writing for performance. Emphasis will be placed on risk, possibly at the expense of genius. Students will be expected to present new work in class every other week.

    Creative Writing – Second Year

    English 292-01 – Creative Writing: Children's Literature: Crystal Hurdle

    Experience an intensive workshop in writing literature for children of various ages. Examine and practice the art of writing for children by exploring a range of different strategies and techniques: identify narrative structure, myth, character development, levels of diction, voice, etc. Discover voices and forms for your writing and express your ideas in styles appropriate for children's interests at different ages, from picture books and nonsense rhymes for children to young adult novels in verse. In developing your own projects, become a successor to J. K. Rowling! Texts include Mary Kole's Writing Irresistible Kidlit, Deborah Ellis' The Breadwinnner, William New's Dream Helmet, Pamela Porter's The Crazy Man and Print Pack with assorted readings.

    Literature – First Year

    English 103-01 & 02 – Studies in Contemporary Literature: Kent Lewis

    This course is a literary buffet, where students get to sample a variety of genres (novels, short stories, plays, myths, poems, comics and other forms esoteric and strange). The chosen authors explore the antipodes of human experiences: desire and regret, seduction and war, conquest and subordination, self and otherness, restraint and excess, sanity and madness, masculinity and femininity, wine and cheese. The topics are big and juicy, but the setting is friendly and fun. By the end of this course, students will be able to impress the cultural elite by casually using words like "subtext" and "postmodernity." Now with 15% more awesomeness.   Texts include Gaiman, Neil. Coraline. HarperCollins: New York, 2002. Print, Moore, Alan. Watchmen. New York: DC Comics, 2007. Print, Palahniuk, Chuck. Fight Club. New York: W.W. Norton, 1996. Print, Parks, Suzan-Lori. In The Blood. New York: Dramatists Play Service, 2000. Print.


    English 103-03 – Studies in Contemporary Literature: Reg Johanson

    Whatever Happened to Interracial Love?
    What used to be called "interracial love" was big at the box office in 2016 / 17, with at least three major films taking up the subject. Why? How are writers and film-makers taking up the problem of "love" in this time of Black Lives Matter and Truth and Reconciliation? This course examines contemporary representations of love and race in film, poetry, and short stories. Texts include Collins, Kathleen. "Whatever Happened to Interracial Love?" Whatever Happened To Interracial Love? HarperCollins, 2016, 33-59, Compton, Wayde. The Outer Harbour. Arsenal, 2014, A United Kingdom. Directed by Amma Asante, Pathe, 2016, Loving. Directed by Jeff Nichols, Raindog Films, 2016, Get Out! Directed by Jordan Peele, Blumhouse Productions, 2017, Simpson, Leanne. Islands of Decolonial Love.Arbeiter Ring, 2013, Rankine, Claudia. Citizen. Graywolf Press, 2014.


    English 103-04 & 05 – Studies in Contemporary Literature: Ian Cresswell

    Literature, Memory, Photography
    A farting dog called Sammy Davis Jnr Jnr, a man who has an argument with James Joyce over a pair of trousers, the longest sentence ever written by a novelist... These are some of the strange literary creations we will encounter in English 103 as we explore the general topic of literature, memory and photography. In so doing, we will see how certain neuro-scientific findings operate as useful metaphors for distinguishing different literary treatments of memory. And in our study of literary treatments of the photograph we will see how the invention of the reproduced (now digital) image has transformed our sense of truth, veracity and self.  Texts: Available in the Capilano Bookstore.


    English 103-06 – Studies in Contemporary Literature: Vicky Ross

    Texts from the City
    This course is designed for students who love to travel but have commitments in the Fall Semester that limit them to literary and filmic journeys.  By reading contemporary fiction, poetry, drama and memoir, and by viewing three feature films, travellers who take this course will visit Montreal, Tokyo, New York, Lahore and London.  Expect a brief layover in Vancouver too.  In class discussion we'll consider how each work comments creatively on the life of the city. Texts include:  Haruki Murakami's Sputnik Sweetheart, Caryl Churchill's Serious Money, and the film Francis Ha directed by Noah Baumbach.


    English 109-01 – Contemporary Issues in Literature and Culture: Andrea Westcott

    LOVE and DEATH
    This course explores contemporary issues and how they are interpreted in literature, film, and music. Just as mythic narratives have always been with us, so too have expressions about our longings and anxieties been with us in story form, as the twin poles of our need for love, and our fear of death, underpin our psychic reality. We rationalize this fear of death with denial, but, then counter it with a desire for love and self-expression, often without realizing that these polarities are driven by an underlying erotic compulsion. Thus, we'll survey some of the history of the Gothic genre, along with a selection of short stories from The Broadview Anthology of Short Fiction (2ndedition).  We'll read David Ives' play Venus in Fur and look at a selection of poems about love and death. Finally, we'll read Claudia Casper's novel The Mercy Journals, where she offers us the journals of Allen Quincy, her hero struggling to survive in the changed environment of North America at the end of the 21st century.


    English 109-02 – Contemporary Issues in Literature and Culture: Aurelea Mahood

    "The content of a movie is a novel or a play or opera."  - Marshall McLuhan
    This course explores contemporary issues and how they are interpreted in literature, film, and music with a particular focus on creative adaptation. Through an examination of the course texts, we will assess in the ways in which the practice of adapting and remixing is central to the story-telling imagination and contemporary culture in a variety of genres, including Virginia Woolf's Orlando, Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson's Peter and the Starcatchers, and The Worn Archive.

    Literature – Second Year

    English 200-01 – English Literature to 1660: Cassidy Picken

    Cultures of Romance, 1000-1670 AD:  Imagining Other Bodies, Other Worlds

      Romance: (1a) A medieval narrative (originally in verse, later also in prose) relating the legendary or extraordinary adventures of some hero of chivalry; (3a) A fictitious narrative, usually in prose, in which the settings or the events depicted are remote from everyday life, or in which sensational or exciting events or adventures form the central theme.

    In 1783, at the height of the Age of Enlightenment, the poet and critic James Beatty described the medieval literature of "Old Romance" as a product of backward times: "The world was then ignorant and credulous, and passionately fond of wonderful adventures, and deeds of valour. They believed in giants, dwarves, dragons, enchanted castles, and every imaginable species of necromancy." Today, the words "medieval" and "romance" still raise the same associations they did for Beatty: backwardness, superstition, unreason, servitude.  To the contrary, in this course we will approach romance as a genre that is fundamentally about the experience of living with difference. In this light, romance may offer us a sophisticated critical language for understanding our own cosmopolitan world, which demands interacting with persons, bodies, tastes, politics, and religious beliefs that run counter to our own. In addition to exploring these issues in medieval tales, poems, and songs, our readings will take us forward into the early Enlightenment era, showing romance's affective and narrative structures continued to influence such modern genres as the travelogue, the utopian novel, and science fiction (including the writings of Thomas More, William Shakespeare, John Milton, and Margaret Cavendish). Pursuing romance's transmission out of the "dark ages" and into modernity will offer us surprising new angles to engage contemporary discussions regarding sexual politics, colonialism, racism, and scientific knowledge.


    English 203-01 – Canadian Literature: Rae Nickolichuk

    This course will examine a variety of Canadian works from the seriously funny and subversive to the darkly dystopic. Ann-Marie Macdonald's play Goodnight Desdemona, Good Morning Julietbridges the modern and the historic in what can be described as a witty, and particularly Canadian, response to Shakespeare and theatre traditions.  Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, written in the 1980s looks to a future we are experiencing in some ways now – a world where environmental disaster, war, and individual rights intersect. The novel has been recently adapted into a television series.  Robert Lepage's film,Le Confessional, explores the complicated nature of truth and how the intensely personal and public worlds meet.  Finally, a variety of short stories and poems, available in a print package, will capture the rich diversity of contemporary Canadian literature.


    English 207-01 – Literary Theory and Criticism: Brian Ganter

    Students in this course learn about the dynamic history of literary theory and criticism, focusing on the last century and approaches such as formalism, structuralism, psychoanalysis, feminism, Marxism, and post-structuralism.

    Literature – Third Year

    English 323-01 – Studies in Genre: Andrea Westcott

    Creations and Recreations in Gothic Terror
    "Attachment, protection, and terror: curiously, all of these terms cluster together around the idea of ‘security'": the theme this term in the Liberal Studies Bachelor of Arts (LSBA) program. From this perspective, we will read individual texts by and about significant writers of Gothic literature, a form that had its beginnings in the 18thcentury and has thrived in evermore distinctive Gothic sub-genres, with derivations and analogues that have developed over four centuries: vampire, sentimental, female, ghost, murder, detective, horror, psychological, philosophical, and science fiction. From the Romantic and Victorian periods, we will read Emily Bronte, Henry James, Bram Stoker, Arthur Conan Doyle, in addition to Jane Austen's gothic parody. Each of these texts is paired with a recreation from the 20th or 21st centuries. This course consists of multimedia lectures, small group work and group presentations, in-class and essay writing, and critical analysis of the texts, both through primary and secondary reading material. Students will be encouraged to become involved in the course in a variety of ways, including participating in group presentations and watching screenings of movies related to the course literature.


    English 332-01 – Literature and Society: Sheila M. Ross

    The Work of Storytelling
    How do novels and other literary narratives work their magic and allow us to reimagine ourselves and our worlds?  In this course, we look at a selection of unusual contemporary stories sure to move us, doing so despite their uncertain status as "factual" or "fictional," "realistic" or "surreal."  We'll look at key narrative devices and structures, and consider the perhaps surprising question of the ethics of reading such texts.  We take up two novels, Nutshell by Ian McEwan, and Human Acts by Han Kang; short stories from George Saunders' Tenth of December and Ali Smith's The Whole Story; and memoirs by Nick Flynn (Another Bullshit Night in Suck City) and Sarah Manguso (Ongoingness). We'll also include one film narrative, Being Flynn (dir. Paul Weitz). Students will hone their essay writing skills and are encouraged to respond creatively in their critical work with the texts.